A New England Kind of Love

A few days ago, I was honored to share a special day with one of my best friends; her wedding day.

 The Branford House, Groton, CT

The Branford House, Groton, CT

I was amazed and impressed with how calm, cool, and collected Sarah was from the moment I first saw her on Thursday night, to the Sunday morning after the entire shin-dig had run its course. Throughout the fifteen years since we graduated college, my friend Sarah and I have shared a lot of adventures. She lived with me and my family the first couple of months after graduating, we shared many fun and fanciful LA dinners together after hitting our stride in the working world, and we raced an ironman together, Vineman, 2010. Throughout our nearly twenty years of friendship, I had met, liked, and disliked many of the suitors that came in and out of her life, but when she moved to New York to attend nursing school and first introduced her friend Gerard into a conversation, I felt something special. Gerard was a couple years younger, good-looking, energetic, well-educated, successful, and crazy for Sarah. Instantly, I knew in my gut he was the one.

 Gerard and Sarah 

Gerard and Sarah 

Thankfully, I had the opportunity to meet Gerard a few years ago when he joined Sarah on a trip to LA to celebrate another friend’s wedding. He lived up to every expectation I had. He was funny, kind, thoughtful, engaging, and obviously in love with Sarah. Next, I sat back and hoped I would get the “I’m engaged” phone call. On April 11th, 2015, my phone rang.

 My favorite speaking opportunity, Rehearsal Dinner.

My favorite speaking opportunity, Rehearsal Dinner.

Since Gerard is from the east coast, and that is where their life thrives today, they decided to get married near Mystic, CT on October 15th, 2016 at the Branford House in Groton, CT. As many of you know, and those who don’t, you should, Julia Roberts starred in a classic film in 1988 called Mystic, Pizza.

It is the story of three best friends, two of them sisters, bursting to flee the confines of their lovely, yet all too-quaint hometown, and their jobs at the best pizza joint around, Mystic Pizza. Go see it, it is wonderful! My sister Mary and I watched this movie at least every three days between 1992 and 1994, it is a classic. Obviously, I was thrilled at the chance to actually visit the famed town of Mystic to both celebrate Sarah and Gerard, and soak up a bit of film history/scratch the itch of an early teenage obsession.

 Jen C. and I enjoying a day in Mystic.

Jen C. and I enjoying a day in Mystic.

Furthermore, one of the many highlights of Sarah’s nuptials being set on the east coast, was that I could use the opportunity to visit my good friend, and OG marathoner, Hillary, and her adorable family in Park Slope, Brooklyn. I am so proud of the mother Hillary has become, she is a natural. Plus, there is nothing better than discovering an adorably chic bar while on a much needed night out in Brooklyn.

 Hillary and her amazing daughter, Ruby.

Hillary and her amazing daughter, Ruby.

As if that visit with Hill wasn’t tremendous enough, I also planned to sneak in a visit with one of my favorite people on the planet, my cousin Erin.

Erin is my eldest cousin, and has always exuded an essence of kindness and cool that makes her both awe-inspiring and approachable, an impressive combination that has cemented her status as my top role model from the early eighties up until present day. She lives with her fantastic three boys and husband Shawn about an hour outside of New York city in a gorgeous town called, Pound Ridge. Also, she is a fantastic runner. Therefore, it was a treat and a half to have her ask me questions about running, a true pinch me moment for this red-head that I will cherish. Speaking of red-heads, Erin’s oldest son Finn, is a ginger like me. Good ‘ole Kelly’s representing our Irish roots.:)

 Erin and her brood of boys.

Erin and her brood of boys.

Another special surprise that came about from my wonderful weekend in Mystic, was re-connecting with two of my dear friends from my freshman dorm in college, Libby Pit. Jen and Amy lived in the room right next door to me, and made every day flare with hilarious drama. Unfortunately, as the years in school and life passed, we lost touch. Jen lives in Austin, Amy lives in Colorado Springs, and I live in LA. But, the love of Sarah and Gerard brought us back together, better than ever, in magnificent Mystic.

 The ladies of Libby Pit reunite! Jen, Sarah, and Amy. 

The ladies of Libby Pit reunite! Jen, Sarah, and Amy. 

Furthermore, Sarah and Gerard’s blessed union sprung life to new friendships as well. I was able to spend quality time with Sarah’s friends from New York, Jen and Adam, and her friends from LA, Kim, Erin, and Matt. I was grateful to share Sarah and Gerard’s special day with such exceptional human beings.

 Kim and Adam, the LMU duo who support Sarah from both coasts.

Kim and Adam, the LMU duo who support Sarah from both coasts.

I am happy to have been a part of my friend’s leap into marriage. I am happy to have shared meaningful moments with two of my favorite women in the world, Hillary and Erin. And, I am happy to have run the streets of Mystic, CT and Brooklyn, NY. 

 

 Let the adventure begin.

Let the adventure begin.